Eduard Gerlach laid the cornerstone for the world brands GEHWOL and GERLACH TECHNIK in 1868 when he took over his father Ludwig's colonial wares business and expanded it with a pharmacy.

Eduard Gerlach rapidly acquired the reputation of a pioneer in foot care: In 1882 he bought "E. Gerlach's Preservative Cream" onto the market the first industrially produced foot care product worldwide.